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Marketing Plan

May 19, 2007 | Comments Off on Marketing Plan


McDreamy on your Sprint cell phone

GreysAnatomyTV networks are doing everything they can to make sure that you, the viewer, can watch your favorite show whenever or wherever you want. The broadcasters have been heavily hyping their digital initiatives at this weeks upfront presentations to advertisers in an attempt to remind everyone that theres more to online video than YouTube.

But now, thedistribution battlegroundappears to bemoving beyond thecomputer tothe cell phone as well. Disney-owned (DIS) ABC announced Tuesday that beginning this week, full episodes of Desperate Housewives, Greys Anatomy, Ugly Betty and Lostwill be available to Sprint (S) customers.

The catch is that you have to be a subscriber to SprintsPower Vision TV Pack, which costs $20 a month. Thats on top of whatever you are paying for your monthly wireless plan. Disney said that Sprint customers will also be able to watch ABC News and Disney channel content as part of this package.And another Sprint service will offer on-demand and linearbroadcasts of programming from only theDisney Channel for $15 a month.

Executives from ABC and Sprint both expressed optimism about the new ABC Mobile offering. So you can probably expect to see GEs (GE) NBC, CBS (CBS) and News Corp.s (NWS) Foxalso look to make deals with wireless carriers to bring full episodes, and not just clips or mobisodes to cell phones.

To that end, Alana Muller, a director ofwireless data programs and marketing for Sprint, said that Sprint aleady offers streams of full episodes of CBS drama Jericho. But she said the agreement with ABCmarks a significant expansion in terms of the amount of content the carrier is offering to subscribers.

Whats more, it looks like fans of Desperate Housewivesand otherABC shows wont have to dump their current carrier andrush to sign up for Sprint service so they can watch shows on their cell phones.

Albert Cheng, executive vice president, digital mediafor Disney-ABC Television Group told me Tuesday that the ABC-Sprint deal is not exclusive and that ABCis in discussions with other major carriers as well. Sopresumably, we could soon see announcements about ABC Mobile coming to Verizon (VZ) and AT&T (T) in the near future.